AnnaMarie Houlis
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Journalist & travel blogger

Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher have a very minimalist Christmas with their kids, four-year-old daughter, Wyatt, and two-year-old son, Dmitri.

In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Kunis said that "so far, [their] tradition is no presents for the kids," despite definitely being in a position to go big during the holidays.

“We've told our parents, 'We're begging you: If you have to give [them] something, pick one gift,'" Kunis said. “'Otherwise, we'd like to take a charitable donation, to the Children's Hospital or a pet... Whatever you want.' That's our new tradition."

Kunis and Kutcher's Christmas is far from typical. In fact, the holiday season is the strongest sales period of the year for retailers, usually commencing on Thanksgiving weekend, with Black Friday leading sales, and continuing through the end of January.

The most recent survey from Statista revealed that U.S. consumers expected to spend approximately $794 U.S. dollars on average on Christmas gifts, even spending about $553 on themselves during the holidays. The average number of gifts they expect? About 15.9.

That's a lot of money on a lot of gifts that Kunis and Kutcher decide to spend elsewhere in order to teach their kids how to be more mindful consumers and care less about material things. After all, Kunis herself didn't grow up getting presents during the holidays either.

“I come from communist Russia, where you're not allowed to be happy, so my holiday traditions are ‘be quiet,’” Kunis added in the interview. “Coming to America is when you realize Christmas has a magical quality to it. In Russia, back in the day, it was a very religious holiday, so you don't celebrate Christmas if you're not Christian and if you're not at Mass. So, I being Jewish, was like, ‘Christmas is not for you.’”

Only when coming to America did Kunis realize that "Christmas is so inclusive" and did she buy a Christmas tree and start her own traditions.

"As far as tradition goes, my family's big on any excuse to get the family together," she said.

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AnnaMarie Houlis is a feminist, a freelance journalist and an adventure aficionado with an affinity for impulsive solo travel. She spends her days writing about women’s empowerment from around the world. You can follow her work on her blog, HerReport.org, and follow her journeys on Instagram @her_report, Twitter @herreportand Facebook.

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